So, you’re looking at my shiny new website. And I even know — mostly —how to work it, thanks to the patience and kind expertise of Matt Nelson (I highly recommend him if you’ve got any design, WordPress or SEO needs). My last site was rarely updated because it was far less user-friendly, and I’m not that friendly when I can’t use things. This one is so much better, but there’s a catch: I’m rebuilding the portfolio from scratch and it’s a long, tedious process. If you see things that seem incomplete, that’s because they are.
I’m working steadily on this in my off-time and, although it’s taking forever, it’s been a pretty cool stroll down memory lane, too. In many ways, working as a freelance writer is like being a perpetual college student (and I’m not just talking about the yoga pants and popcorn for lunch). I learn as much as I possibly can about a single subject in a limited timeframe, cram for the final, and then it’s on to the next thing. After ten years, it’s easy to forget about stories that really changed me or meant something to me at the time. Revisiting them is the reward for what’s shaping up to be a weeks-long process. Maybe even months. (I wonder if there’s some sort of Matt Nelson out there who could equip me with the tools needed to organize and clean my office. It’s not looking very Pinteresting in here.)
I also took a big step yesterday and took Violence UnSilenced offline. I even shuttered the Facebook and Twitter pages. I’ll create some sort of tribute place-keeper here on this site but it had been out of commission for nearly two years now. I’d originally intended to keep it up as a resource and archive, but the only traffic it was getting was inquiries from people hoping to get in touch with the survivors and other requests I couldn’t accommodate, and I think ultimately it was just too confusing to keep it up. Big sigh. End of an era, for sure. But it certainly served its purpose in its time.
In other (sort of quiet, sheepish, unsteady) news, I’ve enrolled in my very first fiction writing course, an online offering through UW-Madison. I’ve never tried to write fiction and don’t know the first thing about how, but it’s always been my favorite thing to read. No idea yet what I plan to do with that but I’m curious and ready, so why not.
Finally, I’ve got a new article out in the April Madison Magazine on police response to mental health—check it out here, if you’re so inclined.